Nepal native and Arkansas State student grateful family is alive - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Nepal native and Arkansas State student grateful family is alive

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) -

Half a world away, situated between India and China, the country of Nepal is devastated.

Homes, businesses and historical sites were reduced to rubble after a 7.9 magnitude earthquake hit the country.

For one student at Arkansas State though, the news hit extremely close to home.

"Unfortunately, it was the place where my parents live, in Kathmandu Valley," Shyam Thapa told Region 8 News.

Thapa has lived in the United States for the past six years. He's currently working to obtain his doctorate degree at Arkansas State University.

Thapa said he first learned about the earthquake Saturday morning around 2am.

"At first, I couldn't believe it," Thapa said. "I searched on the Internet and found some news like the magnitude of the earthquake and the places where it was hardest hit."

Thapa said instead of sleeping, he spent the next four hours trying to contact his family. Thapa said the epicenter of the earthquake was just 15 miles from his parents' home.

"It was ringing there but nobody was picking up the call," Thapa said. "I had the feeling like, they must be safe but it's still...I was so worried. If something else happened, then it's a disaster."

Thapa was finally able to get in touch with his father around 6:30 Saturday morning. Though his family is okay, they were unable to take anything with them when the earthquake hit.

"It was the crucial hour, they had to run. they could not think about their property at the time," Thapa said.

Thapa said his parents, like many others, cannot go home just yet either.

Thapa explained that Nepalis have set up shelter in open fields for fear of aftershocks bringing down even more buildings.

"People were so scared at the time," Thapa said. "I heard that nobody left that open field, that they didn't go back to the house."

Now, he's just worried about the future of his home country.

"What is going to be in the next year?" Thapa said. "I mean, how to rebuild a whole nation again?"

Thapa said his brother is a doctor in Nepal and has been treating many of the severely wounded at a hospital there.

Thapa asks everyone to keep Nepal in their prayers and if possible, help the country rebuild by donating supplies or money.

Copyright 2015 KAIT. All Rights Reserved.

  • Region 8 News</span><a class="customMoreLink" href="/Global/category.asp?C=4391" target="_top">More >></a>Region 8 NewsMore>>

  • Arkansas State University convention center coming soon

    Arkansas State University convention center coming soon

    Friday, November 17 2017 9:07 PM EST2017-11-18 02:07:11 GMT
    Saturday, November 18 2017 8:43 AM EST2017-11-18 13:43:07 GMT
    (Source: KAIT)(Source: KAIT)

    After presenting a request to get their Embassy Suites Hotel and convention center up and running, the O’Reilly group received the green light from the Jonesboro Advertising and Promotions Commission. However, not without certain stipulations in that request.

    After presenting a request to get their Embassy Suites Hotel and convention center up and running, the O’Reilly group received the green light from the Jonesboro Advertising and Promotions Commission. However, not without certain stipulations in that request.

  • Downtown businesses help out City Youth Ministries

    Downtown businesses help out City Youth Ministries

    Friday, November 17 2017 9:22 PM EST2017-11-18 02:22:20 GMT
    Friday, November 17 2017 9:55 PM EST2017-11-18 02:55:05 GMT
    (Source: KAIT)(Source: KAIT)

    The holidays are just around the corner and businesses in downtown Jonesboro spent Friday evening giving back to kids in the community.

    The holidays are just around the corner and businesses in downtown Jonesboro spent Friday evening giving back to kids in the community.

  • FCC to allow phone companies to block illegal robocalls

    FCC to allow phone companies to block illegal robocalls

    Friday, November 17 2017 9:40 PM EST2017-11-18 02:40:38 GMT
    Friday, November 17 2017 9:51 PM EST2017-11-18 02:51:13 GMT
    (Source: Pablo)(Source: Pablo)

    The Attorney General of Arkansas was successful in getting the Federal Communications Commission’s to allow phone companies to block illegal robocalls.

    The Attorney General of Arkansas was successful in getting the Federal Communications Commission’s to allow phone companies to block illegal robocalls.

Powered by Frankly